Imagine you have been convicted of a crime. You pleaded guilty, you knew you did it, so you didn't even bother trying to deny it. The judge sentences you death. But then someone offers to take your place. The judge takes their offer and lets you go free. You are ecstatic!! You almost had to spend the rest of your days in a prison cell until they finally decided to carry out your death sentence, but now you are free!
Now imagine one day, you walked into the prison, went into a cell and closed the door behind you, then started crying out for someone to help you.
We are sinners who have been convicted of death. But Christ took the punishment of death for us. When we give Christ Lordship over our lives, we are granted freedom from the punishment of our sin.
You are probably asking the question, "Why would anyone have walked back into the prison and put themselves into a cell when they are free?"
This is what we do, when we live as though we are enslaved to sin. You see, when Christ died on the cross He took on all our sin - past, present, and future. He took it. He gave us freedom. Walking into that cell is what we do when we begin to feel defeated by sin. We go back into old habits and patterns, or even start new ones. Then we cry out to God for freedom, and He says, "I've already given you freedom, now start living like you're free!"
His death was once and for all. He doesn't need to keep freeing us over and over again. We just need to start living like we are free.
So what does it mean to live like you are free? If you asked someone who had been released from prison what it would mean for them to now live like they were free, I'm sure they would not say that going back to their old life of crime with the threat of going back to prison would be true freedom. But being released as though you had never committed a crime, no record to stain your reputation, now that's true freedom. That is what we have been given. Christians have the choice to live in the freedom that they have been given through Christ's blood, in Christ's strength. Or to allow themselves to be falsely bound by sin. I say falsely bound, because once we have been freed by the blood of Christ, sin no longer has power over us. Satan no longer has the upper hand. We may feel like it does, because we are weak in our own strength - but it doesn't.
What sins are your prison cell?
Are you going to continue to live as though you are a prisoner, or are you going to live in your freedom?
I thought of a few of my own, and let me tell you, I would much rather live in the freedom I have in Christ.
Go live in freedom.